Updated: Apr 01, 2024

Methodology for Evaluating Banking Deposit Accounts

See how the MyBankTracker team of experts analyzes deposit accounts from banks, credit unions, and non-bank financial services providers.
Contents
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MyBankTracker ratings and selections for the best accounts use weighted averages for banking deposit accounts, which include:

  • Checking accounts
  • Savings accounts
  • Money market accounts
  • Certificates of deposit (CDs)

Checking accounts

For checking accounts, we looked at the following criteria:

  • Monthly maintenance fees: 50%
  • Cost and breadth of ATM access: 20%
  • Financial incentives (e.g., sign-up bonus, interest rates, or rewards): 15%
  • Other service fees or discounts: 10%
  • Digital banking features: 5%

Savings accounts

For savings accounts, we looked at the following criteria:

  • Interest rates: 45%
  • Monthly maintenance fees: 40%
  • Cost and breadth of ATM access: 5%
  • Tools and programs that promote positive savings behavior: 5%
  • Other service fees: 5%

Money market accounts

For money market accounts, we looked at the following criteria:

  • Interest rates: 40%
  • Monthly maintenance fees: 35%
  • Cost and breadth of ATM access: 10%
  • Availability of check-writing: 5%
  • Tools and programs that promote positive savings behavior: 5%
  • Other service fees: 5%

Certificates of deposit (CDs)

For savings accounts, we looked at the following criteria:

  • Interest rates: 75%
  • Early withdrawal penalties: 10%
  • Breadth of available maturity terms: 10%
  • Any renewal rate bonuses: 5%

How data is collected

Our survey covers more than 100 financial institutions and companies, including banks, credit unions, and non-bank financial services providers.

Methods of obtaining and verifying product information may include one or more of the following:

  • Information available directly from the financial institution/company websites
  • Calling a branch, physical location, or customer service line
  • Contacting a member of the press/media team from the financial institution or service provider

How the data is analyzed

For each product criterion, our evaluation team assigns a score from 0 to 5. The weighted average is calculated based on the scores for the criteria. 

Who evaluates the accounts

The evaluation team is comprised of industry experts, editors, data analysts, and writers who have more than 10 years covering personal finance and financial products. 

Many of our writers and contributors are Certified Financial Planners, Certified Educators of Personal Finance, and Certified Public Accountants with expertise and experience in financial planning, investment banking, insurance underwriting, mortgage lending, and more. Their work has been published in major media outlets such as Forbes, Money Magazine, Yahoo! Finance, Business Insider, and local news outlets.

Updates and ongoing reviews

Financial products and services are subject to change without notice. The MyBankTracker team puts its best effort to maintain up-to-date and accurate offerings that are currently available to consumers and business clients.

We review the recommendations of the best accounts on a monthly basis to ensure that:

  1. The product is currently available to new customers.
  2. The product details are accurate and its ratings remain among our top recommendations.
  3. The product is replaced with another product that meets the criteria to take a spot on the list.
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